Iran has downplayed the activation of more powerful uranium enriching machines, reported on July 9, saying this was the last step in a “technical” operation.
The United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency shared its new report with news agencies on Saturday indicating that Iran escalated its enrichment operations by deploying more advanced IR-6 centrifuges that can quickly switch between different levels of uranium purification.
Behruz Kamalvandi, the spokesman for Iran’s atomic organization told local media on Sunday that his agency had informed the IAEA “At least two weeks earlier,” about the operation, and “the international media was exaggerating” the development “with particular intentions”.
He added that the IR-6 centrifuges would produce 20-percent enriched uranium.
Kamalvandi went on to say that his agency is simply carrying out its mandate according to Iran’s legislation. He was referring to a law adopted by the parliament in 2020 mandating higher degree of enrichment until the United States lifts economic sanctions.
Nuclear talks between Iran and world powers since April 2021 to restore the 2015 nuclear deal known as the JCPOA have not succeeded. Iran has been expanding its nuclear program since 2019 as US sanctions imposed by former President Donald Trump remain in effect.
The US and its European allies have repeatedly warned that the expansion of Iran’s nuclear program, talks to restore the JCPOA might become meaningless.